Melamed Academy’s Elementary Social Studies curriculum is designed to give students a comprehensive overview of all key concepts in an exciting and experience-based learning environment.
Core curricular standards are covered in weekly installments. Text-based lessons include audio support to support developing readers. As the student reads, he answers quick comprehension-check questions and scores points in his “game” and earns prizes.
Multimedia, pictures, maps, and videos round out the instructional part of the lesson. Next, the students participate in activities and projects related to the units. Virtual field trips zoom the students to the site of the action, as they explore virtual exhibits, museums, and faraway locations.
Week 1: Learning about Maps
Students will learn about the different types of maps and their uses. They will define cardinal directions, compass rose and will learn that maps indicate boundaries.
Week 2: Where in the World is Your State?
Students will use a series of maps to locate their state. They will start with a globe, then narrow in to their own county and city.
Week 3: Continents and Oceans
Students will learn about layers of the Earth as they define each layer. Students will learn about Pangaea and the movement of the Earth’s plates. Students will study the seven continents and will define characteristics of each. They will identify features such as climate, size and population.
Week 4: Finding World Communities On Your Map
Students will continue to increase their map skills as they identify components of maps. They will learn about Mercator, flat and topographical maps. Students will identify the four hemispheres and will define the prime meridian and the equator. Students will also learn how to use lines of longitude and latitude by finding locations on a map using coordinates.
Week 5: Choosing a Place to Live
Students will consider the factors that play a role in choosing where to live. They will also identify the types of homes that are found in different cultures. Students will define census and will learn about the value of a census. Students will also learn about the ancient people of the Fertile Crescent and why they chose to live in that region.
Week 6: Cultures and Civilizations
Students will learn about early civilizations and their cultures. They will study the civilizations of the Tigris-Euphrates, Indus Valley and Mesoamerica along with other major civilizations.
Week 7: Legends & Folktales of World Communities
Students will study the differences between myths, legends and fairy tales. Students will study folk tales from Turkish and Chinese Cultures. They will also learn about the tales from the Brothers Grimm of Germany.
Week 8: Art, Music & Artifacts of World Communities
Students will learn about the value of ancient artwork to historians and archaeologists in learning about civilizations. They will learn about instruments of different cultures, including bagpipes, drums and the alpenhorn.
Week 9: World Celebrations
Students will the consider factors that separate cultures. Students will study languages of the world. They will identify which languages are spoken most often. Students will learn various meanings of gestures throughout the world. They will also learn the value of knowing more than one language and will learn about various alphabets and writing systems.
Week 10: Cultural Exchanges
Students will learn about various cultures. Students will learn how these traditions began and how people in the world dress and act differently.
Week 11: Measuring Time
Students will learn ways in which ancient people kept track of time. Students will study various ancient methods for tracking time. They will learn that the Jews and Egyptians both used lunar calendars, which was also used by the Mayans. Students will study the first clocks, such as sun dials and water clocks. They will also learn about the time zones of the U.S.
Week 12: Let’s Make a Timeline
Students will study timelines. They will make a timeline of their own lives, choosing important events and relating them to other events of their lives. Students will use a timeline of George Washington to learn about how timelines are organized.
Week 13: We Depend on Each Other
Students will learn about producers and consumers. They will discuss the characteristics of a healthy economy and how trade is important to a community. Students will learn how imports and exports help economies stay strong.
Week 14: Families in Communities
Students will study how family structures have changed over time. They will learn that family traditions provide a sense of belonging and a way for us to learn who we are and why we do certain things. Students will also learn about other kinds of families, such as groups like the United Nations and the family of the Olympic athletes.
Week 15: Different and Alike: Living Together
Students will compare the lives of two children living in different cultures and learn how they are alike and different. Students will consider the abilities and disabilities of others and will learn ways people with disabilities can do mostly everything other people can. Students will define unique and will learn that we are all different from all the rest.
Week 16: Problems in World Communities
Students will look at historical examples to illuminate the importance of working together to solve world problems. Students will read the story of Justin Lebo, who made a difference by fixing bikes and donating them to children in need. Students will define sociology and will learn that social workers are trained to help people in families and communities solve problems that they can’t solve on their own.
Week 17: Migration Patterns
Students will learn about the history of immigration in the United States. They will learn the motivations of immigrants for coming to the U.S. and where they settle once they arrive. Students will study both where immigrants of the past came from and where most of the immigrants that travel to the U.S. come from today. They will learn that Chinese, Mexican, African and Norwegian immigrants made up a large portion of immigrants in the past. They will also learn about immigrants of today, such as Hispanic and Chinese immigrants.
Week 18: Geographical Regions
Students will compare physical regions and tourist regions of New York. They will also learn that being familiar with regions of the world is helpful in understanding where places are in relation to ourselves. Students will identify photos with their regions on a globe.
Week 19: Diversity in Regions
Students will study regions based on their climate. Students will define climate and weather. They will learn about the tools weather forecasters use and will learn the difficulty of the field. Students will also study the relationship between the Earth’s environments and climate zones.
Week 20: Different Cultures in Different Regions
Students will study regions based on population and culture. Students will learn short histories and defining characteristics of 22 regions of the world.
Week 21: Changing the Environment
Students will study the Industrial Revolution and its effects on farming. Students will learn about the importance of soil in farming and will learn about the Dust Bowl of the 1930s. They will also study the role of water in farming. Students will study the ways that humans change the environment to meet their needs. Students will learn about dikes, dams and draining wetlands and will consider the environmental repercussions of such practices.
Week 22: Depending on Other Communities for Needs and Wants
Students will define trade and will learn about the role of specialization in trading. Students will study forms of money used in the past and today. Students will define economy, imports and exports. They will learn the balance of international trade.
Week 23: Using Natural Resources
Students will define natural resources and their purposes. They will study the importance of using natural resources wisely. Students will learn about fossil fuels as non-renewable resources. They will study how both petroleum and coal are formed. Students will study multiple ways that they can help conserve resources.
Week 24: Transporting Resources
Students will study the modes of transportation used to move people and resources. They will learn how improvements in technology have increased the speed of transportation. Students will study various modes of transportation that are used all over the world. They will study small boats, cargo ships, railroads and airplanes among many others. Citizenship and Government in World Communities
Week 25: Monuments and Memorials
Students will define monuments and memorials and will identify examples of each found in the U.S. They will study other monuments of the world and will learn about the cultural significance of these monuments. They will learn about such monuments as the Taj Mahal, the Shwedagon Pagoda and the Castel Sant’ Angelo.
Week 26: Symbols and Flags
Students will study the history of flags. They will learn what the first flags represented as well as what modern flags are used to represent. Students will learn the ceremonial guidelines for hanging flags. They will also learn about other symbols of our country, such as the Liberty Bell and the Statue of Liberty.
Week 27: Governments in the World
Students will define government and democracy. They will study the structure of government as well as its roles and responsibilities. Students will study various types of government leaders, such as prime minster, chancellor and sultan. Students will define civil and criminal laws as they study the ancient Babylonians and their methods for creating written laws.
Week 28: The Year in Review
The Year in Review